Paediatrics (RCH) - Research Publications

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    Evaluation of a decision aid for prenatal testing of fetal abnormalities: a cluster randomised trial [ISRCTN22532458]
    Nagle, C ; Lewis, S ; Meiser, B ; Metcalfe, S ; Carlin, JB ; Bell, R ; Gunn, J ; Halliday, J (BIOMED CENTRAL LTD, 2006-04-13)
    BACKGROUND: By providing information on the relative merits and potential harms of the options available and a framework to clarify preferences, decision aids can improve knowledge and realistic expectations and decrease decisional conflict in individuals facing decisions between alternative forms of action. Decision-making about prenatal testing for fetal abnormalities is often confusing and difficult for women and the effectiveness of decision aids in this field has not been established. This study aims to test whether a decision aid for prenatal testing of fetal abnormalities, when compared to a pamphlet, improves women's informed decision-making and decreases decisional conflict. METHODS/DESIGN: A cluster designed randomised controlled trial is being conducted in Victoria, Australia. Fifty General Practitioners (GPs) have been randomised to one of two arms: providing women with either a decision aid or a pamphlet. The two primary outcomes will be measured by comparing the difference in percentages of women identified as making an informed choice and the difference in mean decisional conflict scores between the two groups. Data will be collected from women using questionnaires at 14 weeks and 24 weeks gestation. The sample size of 159 women in both arms of the trial has been calculated to detect a difference of 18% (50 to 68%) in informed choice between the two groups. The required numbers have been adjusted to accommodate the cluster design, miscarriage and participant lost--to--follow up. Baseline characteristics of women will be summarised for both arms of the trial. Similarly, characteristics of GPs will be compared between arms. Differences in the primary outcomes will be analysed using 'intention-to-treat' principles. Appropriate regression techniques will adjust for the effects of clustering and include covariates to adjust for the stratifying variable and major potential confounding factors. DISCUSSION: The findings from this trial will make a significant contribution to improving women's experience of prenatal testing and will have application to a variety of maternity care settings. The evaluation of a tailored decision aid will also have implications for pregnancy care providers by identifying whether or not such a resource will support their role in providing prenatal testing information.
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    General anaesthesia or conscious sedation for painful procedures in childhood cancer: the family's perspective
    Crock, C ; Olsson, C ; Phillips, R ; Chalkiadis, G ; Sawyer, S ; Ashley, D ; Camilleri, S ; Carlin, J ; Monagle, P (BRITISH MED JOURNAL PUBL GROUP, 2003-03-01)
    BACKGROUND: Until recently, midazolam sedation was routinely used in our institution for bone marrow aspirates and lumbar punctures in children with cancer. It has been perceived by many doctors and nurses as being well tolerated by children and their families. AIM: To compare the efficacy of inhalational general anaesthesia and midazolam sedation for these procedures. METHODS: A total of 96 children with neoplastic disorders, who received either inhalational general anaesthesia with sevoflurane, nitrous oxide, and oxygen (GA) or sedation with oral or nasal midazolam (SED) as part of their routine preparation for procedures were studied. The experiences of these children were examined during their current procedure and during their first ever procedure. Main outcome measures were the degree of physical restraint used on the child, and the levels of distress and pain experienced by the child during the current procedure and during the first procedure. The family's preference for future procedures was also determined. RESULTS: During 102 procedures under GA, restraint was needed on four occasions (4%) when the anaesthetic mask was first applied, minimal pain was reported, and children were reported as distressed about 25% of the time. During 80 SED procedures, restraint was required in 94%, firm restraint was required in 66%, the child could not be restrained in 14%, median pain score was 6 (scale 0 (no pain) to 6 (maximum pain)), and 90% of the parents reported distress in their child. Ninety per cent of families wanted GA for future procedures. Many families reported dissatisfaction with the sedation regime and raised concerns about the restraint used on their child. CONCLUSIONS: This general anaesthetic regime minimised the need for restraint and was associated with low levels of pain and distress. The sedation regime, by contrast, was much less effective. There was a significant disparity between the perceptions of health professionals and those of families with respect to how children coped with painful procedures.
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    Predicting Female Depression Across Puberty: A Two-Nation Longitudinal Study
    Patton, GC ; Olsson, C ; Bond, L ; Toumbourou, JW ; Carlin, JB ; Hemphill, SA ; Catalano, RF (ELSEVIER SCIENCE INC, 2008-12-01)
    OBJECTIVE: To prospectively examine the relation between pubertal stage and the onset and course of depressive symptoms. METHOD: The design was a three-wave longitudinal study of health and social development using statewide community samples in Washington, United States, and Victoria, Australia. Approximately 5,769 students initially ages 10 to 15 years were assessed for depressive symptoms with the Short Mood and Feelings Questionnaire. Pubertal status was assessed using a self-report version of the Pubertal Development Scale. RESULTS: Advancing pubertal stage carried higher risks for depressive symptoms in female subjects in all of the three study waves. The pubertal rise in female depressive symptoms was due to both higher risk for incident cases and an even greater effect on risks for persistence of depressive symptoms. Report of poor emotional control 12 months earlier carried a twofold higher risk for incident depressive symptoms and largely explained the pubertal rise in female incident cases. High family conflict and severity of bullying also predicted persistence of depressive symptoms. Preexisting depressive symptoms were not associated with later increases in the rate of pubertal transition. CONCLUSIONS: Advancing pubertal stage carries risks for both the onset and persistence of depressive symptoms in females. Social adversity around puberty predicts the persistence of symptoms but does not account for a pubertal rise in female depression. A report of poor emotional control may be a useful marker of girls at risk for depressive symptoms and as a target for preventive intervention.
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    Validation of clinical case definition of acute intussusception in infants in Viet Nam and Australia
    BINES, JULIE ; Liem, Nguyen Thanh ; Justice, Frances ; Son, Tran Ngoc ; CARLIN, JOHN ; DE CAMPO, MARGARET ; JAMSEN, KRIS ; Mulholland, Edward ; BARNETT, PETER ; BARNES, GRAEME ( 2006)
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    Risk factors for intussception in infants in Vietnam and Australia: Adenovirus implicated, but not rotavirus
    BINES, JULIE ; Liem, Nguyen Thanh ; Justice, Frances ; Son, Tran Ngoc ; KIRKWOOD, CARL ; DE CAMPO, MARGARET ; BARNETT, PETER ; BISHOP, RUTH ; ROBINS-BROWNE, ROY ; CARLIN, JOHN ( 2006)